American Education Servicesshady business practices

Review updated:

My student loan was moved to AES after the company I originally borrowed from, Student Loan Xpress, went out of business. I was never informed of this change; I simply got a mass e-mail from AES about some new service they have, which of course I thought was spam and almost deleted. I did a little research and realized that, unfortunately for me, my loan had been moved to AES. I was able to create an account on their website, but there was no information about my loan whatsoever-- all the fields were blank. I waited a few days (this was weeks already after the loan had been moved), then e-mailed them, and then finally got a reply that said the information would be available soon. It was-- after about 2 or 3 weeks-- but did not include any payment history, nor the amount due each month and the date it would be due. I kept checking periodically, but under "Payment Due" it always said "$0, " and I could never find information about how much I was supposed to send and when. I finally e-mailed them after a couple of months of no information, and they sent me a rambling e-mail about how student loans work, with this gem at the end: "monthly statements may not list an amount due for that month but are reminders that there is a balance remaining on your loan."

It may be perfectly legal for a student loan company not to inform their customers about the amount due each month, but it is really, really shady. I have received absolutely no updates from them-- all the information I've received has come at my insistence. I hate to think how many AES borrowers have forgotten to make their payments and are just letting their loans sit there, accruing interest, while AES chuckles all the way to the bank.

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  • It's not AES's fault when loans are transferred over, especially when thousand and thousands of loans are transferred over at once. It takes time for SLX to send the info over. But I guess you just expect AES to transfer information and load the information into their system on a whim of assumption. ?? Noo, No, NO. SLX actually has to forward the info over in order for it to be complete. You apparently make payments on a monthly basis? Am I right? Yes. The due date and the monthly payments are the same, yes? Yes. So send in your payment of the same amount that your supposed to each month by the due date that has been the same for gosh knows how many months. Just like your cable is due, or car payment or rent ARE DUE ON THE SAME DAY EACH MONTH. Lets take some responsibility people. Or must you have your hand held through the whole procedure on how to make payments too?

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  • Fo
      May 21, 2011

    On every other bill I pay, it states the amount due. That is, I believe, the general practice with bills. All of my bills from AES said $0. Forgive me for being a little confused. Given that I don't live in the U.S. I couldn't call these people to make sure this company was even legit. So before you assume that everyone who has a problem with their student loan company is a complete and utter ###, perhaps you should curb your attitude.

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  • Ja
      Jun 27, 2011

    I agree that this whole AES business is super shady. We had the same deal with AES buying my loans from XLS. With XLS we were on direct debit and had been for many years. We started getting the letters this spring and honestly, it was a bit much. We had to go through the process of sending them our bank information, although they already had it as they continued to take the money out of the bank for several months. Then one day they decided they would not do that anymore until they got the information (they already had) from us. We sent the bank routing information to them and they apparently just sat on it until, according to them, it was too late. I guess this would be a good time to mention that we emailed them a scanned copy of the bank routing form the same day we mailed the hardcopy, but for some reason they have absolutely no record of that. (This isn’t over yet as I plan to go back after them on that one.) Then they came back with late fees. We tried to call them and make payment over the phone, but they refuse to take a debit card (the same checking account they were taking the money out of before) or even a credit card. They had to have me call back and give them the checking account information over the phone. This is, again, the same information that they already had to take the money out of the bank in the first place, the same information we had already postal mailed to them, the same information we had already emailed to them, the same information they were re-processing, etc.

    OK, so after spending tens of hours across many days, I finally get them to take my money this one time. The funny part is when they make you verbally commit over the phone that you have intention to pay back your loan - my response was to ask them if they actually had intention to take my money. When they said yes, then I said yes.

    Even more BS still follows. So they get my bank routing information but they say they could not process it because they sat on it until it was more than some 90 days from some arbitrary (at least to me) date. All right so I call on the phone and they say they are not going to accept my direct debit this month, so I ask if I need to resubmit my bank routing information again. They said no, that they were just going to reprocess it and that here in a couple of weeks they would know if they would accept my information. Hey that’s just in time for me to have to go through all of this again with them next month!

    Look, it’s obvious that they are trying very, very hard to make it very, very hard to pay them (I think we all know why – late fees!)

    I’ve been looking for someplace to report these (in my mind shady) business practices to the federal government, but I decided to see if it was just me or if anyone else has been having issues with them (found this site). I think that the people that work the phones there must know that the company has some pretty unpopular policies too. It seems that every person I get on the phone is real defensive right off the bat and they never want to hear about any of my complaints. It doesn’t seem like they log anything I say into a customer relations database or anything as every time I call back they have no idea about what has been going on with my account and I keep having to start all the way over with my story and work them up until right now. By the time I get to the part that I want to pay them, they are already tired of talking to me and just want to get me off the phone as fast as possible. No one ever offers to file a complaint for me or make a note in my file or anything. It’s like they’ve heard all of this before, they know that the company they work for is trying to screw people, and there is nothing they are going to be able to do about it. It’s just a lot of yeah, yeah, yeah - blah, blah, blah – I’ll transfer you to an automated system. If people were able to shop around for their student loan services based upon customer service, no one would ever choose AES. AES has to buy peoples’ loans to get customers, customers who feel they are captive to AES and can not get out until they repay. I can not wait until 2035. And oh yeah, I agree that the paperwork they send you is very hard to figure out on how much you owe. It always prominently displays what the original loan values were, but not so much on what you have left to pay. The $0 thing just follows with the rest of this businesses’ shade.

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  • Ok, first off, AES didn't buy the loan because they don't OWN your loan. They SERVICE the loan. Learn the difference if your going to try to be on a power almighty trip. Secondly, it is a LEGAL process that requires you to AUTHORIZE AES to debit your banking account for direct debit. Therefore, you were given a COURTESTY to have it continue for 90 days from the transfer, allowing your paperwork for the new eft to be sent, because as it is clearly stated on the eft form, TO ALLOW 1-2 BILLING CYCLES TO TAKE EFFECT. It's not that AES just decides to not accept your debit card, there is a new program for debit cards that not all banks and programs participate in yet, therefore its simply not compatible. (So bring that up with your financial institute.) Credit cards are not accepted because it is absolutely would make the situation worse. Compared to the interest rates on your loans and credit cards, you would be more in debt with the credit card and accruing more interest compared to your loan. Kind of common sense? Plus, they can't use your banking info from your debit app, because we don't have written permission. If something happens, and it isn't authrorized, we have to make sure LEGALLY that everything is covered. As far as late fees go, the LENDER (your owner) of the loan, assesses the late fees. They don't make money from that and have no control over it. So learn your facts about loan before you assume things. I understand that everyone is fustrated. Of course, your going to take the easy way and blame it on someone else. If you actually pay attention to the correspondance and the so called 'rude and not understanding' people on the phone, you might learn something. They are not corrupted and don't want to help you. You only have so many options that they have to follow. It's a business. It's your bill. It's life.

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  • Or take responsiblty for your account. It's simple. You have the information you need. AES does not make money off of late fees, actually we make no money from you. We're hired to service the loan and are actually one of the top in the country. So although there are complaints about AES (obvisouly we can't satisfy everyone) the few hundred on here who are complaining compared to the million that are serviced and satisfied, you are all a small fraction. There will always be complaints. No matter what company it is. So please, continue to post and give everyone else something to giggle about. Have a nice day!

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  • Mu
      May 24, 2012

    Honestly, I have loans serviced by both AES and Great Lakes. From AES I have had multiple instances of just general bad business practice- getting the run around after following precise instructions to the T, not being able to see that a payment was made (this is not a requirement, it's just something that I can do on I also have come in contact with AES phone support that was anything but friendly, helpful, or supportive- usually people are rude and have a "it's not my problem" attitude. Why this irks me is because I have worked customer service for years and if I were on the other side of that phone, you better believe I would be nice and helpful no matter how ignorant the customer is- that's your job! Worse I get lots of conflicting answers- I have started noting who I spoke with and the contents of our conversation. Considering I want to pay my loans faithfully and on time, it is somewhat humorous how much trouble I have doing it through AES.

    My problem with AES is not that they are horrible, it's that other companies do it so much better.
    For example, to set up direct deposit at Great Lakes it was a one step, online process. I already have direct debit set up for AES for my undergraduate loans and was hoping to get my graduate loans set up that way as well. I called AES to see if they could also put my new, graduate loans on direct debit and they refused. I have to go through the rigmarole of sending in paper work again. So how is it so simple at Great Lakes and such a pain at AES? I have a feeling it's poor business management, structure, and organization.

    So to "lovepeoplewhocomplainsaboutstudentloans" I hear that you are frustrated. It appears you work for AES and, if so, I am sorry that you work for a company that clearly lacks best business practice and that you get the brunt of it. I have moved my graduate loans from AES to Great Lakes and am praying that my undergraduate institution will switch the servicer of my old loans away from AES because it is an inferior company that deals poorly with it's customers (This may actually happen because of the unique relationship my institution has with it's wonderful lender, PNC!).

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  • Fr
      Mar 28, 2013

    how about when they moved the servicing company from XL Student loans to AES and they didn't tell people. I was in the middle of moving from one place to another in the US and I found out by getting my mail at my parents in the middle of the transfer. They had all my cell phone numbers. They then tell me I have to restart my 2 year interest charges again, right after I just went through the two year process.

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